Archive for February 21, 2012

Getting Proper Ventilation to Confined Spaces

Confined Space Blowers are designed to provide workers with fresh, breathable air while working in confined spaces or used for fume extraction, because air may not move in and out of confined spaces freely due to design, the atmosphere inside a confined space can be very different from the atmosphere outside. Ventilation Blowers need to be properly sized in order to provide the right amount of fresh air or remove contaminates.

What constitutes a confined space?

A space which by design has limited opening for entry and exit, unfavorable, natural ventilation which could contain or produce dangerous air contaminants, and which is not intended for continuous employee occupancy.”
– Center for Dise
ase Control and Prevention.

Confined Spaces can result in oxygen-deficient atmospheres, flammable atmospheres and/or toxic atmospheres. Oxygen levels can quickly decrease in confined spaces when doing work, such as welding, cutting or brazing. Oxygen levels can also decrease if oxygen is displayed by other gases, such as carbon dioxide or nitrogen. The appropriate oxygen level for workers is above 19.5%, anything below that requires a SCBA unit.

Common Air Blower Designs

Axial – similar to a house fan, Axial air blowers are the most commonly used confined space ventilator due to its compact size and easy portability. Axial air blowers are electrically powered and come in AC or DC models, so ensure there is power available nearby before using an axial blower. Axial blowers generally deliver between 700 and 3400 CFM of free air.

Centrifugal – these types of air blowers have a fan wheel with numerous blades (similar to a hamster wheel). Centrifugal blowers deliver between 1000 and 3000 CFM for maximum air movement or fume extraction. Generally used in larger confined spaces are spaces where there is an abundance of toxic gas/fumes.

Confined Space Blowers are highly recommended when working in storage tanks, process vessels, pits, silos, vats, degreasers, reaction vessels, boilers, exhaust ducts, sewers, tunnels, underground utility vaults and pipelines.

Luckily, we carry all the right confined space ventilation equipment to keep you safe, including air blowers, ventilation ducting, duct connectors and ventilation kits.

New to Enviro! Sorbents

Enviro now carries a line of Sorbents used for spill control and cleanup. Sorbents are often the first line of defense against a spill and can be used against a wide range of liquids including oil and petroleum based liquids, chemical liquids and waste water. Sorbents are widely used in manufacturing plants around machinery and at chemical processing plants. We carry a wide selection of sorbents including booms, socks, pillows, pads and rolls.

Types of Sorbents

Booms – are widely used in controlling and containing large spills. Its cylindrical shape is popular in controlling spills on water and multiple booms can be connected together for controlling even larger spills. Booms are used for controlling oil and petroleum based liquids.
Socks
– also know as a mini-boom, socks are also cylindrical in shape and are used to control and contain a spill around machinery or other mechanical equipment that can leak. Socks can also be connected together for containing larger spills.
Pads/Rolls – these sorbents come in flat sheets or unperforated rolls up to 150’ in length and can be used to catch leaks under machinery, line shelves or clean up spills. Sorbent pads and rolls are highly absorbent for cleaning up oil spill, chemical spills and other less leather liquids. Sorbent rolls can be cut to a specific length.
Pillows – sorbent pillows are rectangular in shape and are designed to absorb hazardous liquids more quickly than sorbent pads. Used for cleaning up medium sized spills are as a precautionary when transferring liquids and a spill is possible. Sorbent pillows can be used on a variety of hazardous liquids.

OSHA Injury/Illness Recordkeeping

This is a reminder that beginning on February 1, 2012, companies who are required to keep Injury and Illness log (OSHA Form 300), must post a summary of the log in OSHA Form 300A from Feb.1 to April 30, 2012 in a common area of the company grounds where worker notices are usually posted. The OSHA Form 300A summary must list the total number of job-related injuries, accidents and illness that occurred during the 2011 year. Once OSHA Form 300A is completed, a company executive must certify all established summaries.

Employers can click here to download the OSHA booklet that contains Forms 300, 300A and 301, or visit the OSHA Recordkeeping Web Page.

The OSHA booklet has the forms necessary for maintaining occupational injury and illness records for 2011 as well as:

  • An overview of general instructions for filling out the OSHA 300 and 300A forms along with definition terms used
  • Instruction on how to fill out the Log properly
  • Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illness forms
  • Summary pages for easy posting at the end of the year
  • A worksheet to aid you through filling out the summary
  • OSHA’s Form 301 (Injury and Illness Incident Report Form)

Q & A
Q: How extensively do I have to review the OSHA 300 Log entries at the end of the year?
A:
You must review the entries as extensively as necessary to make sure that they are complete and correct.

Q:Who is considered a company executive?
A:
The company executive who certifies the log must be one of the following persons: an owner of the company, an officer of the corporation, the highest ranking company official or the immediate supervisor of the highest ranking company official.